Amanda is the author of travel memoir A Fly Girl that was flying in the Best Seller list since its release date in November. As a writer, she has also contributed to several anthologies and press reports. Amanda is a blogger and lead for Ms Rose Blossom, a project that encourages girls and women in promoting health/well-being and literature. She is also employed as a Health Trainer in the NHS.
Amanda is also a much valued contributor and author of her story I’m Guilty on Three Counts in Mr Wrong and has contributed her poems How Do I Love Thee? and How Do I Love Thee Like a Rose? in poetry anthology 7 Shades of Love where she talks eloquently on Self Love and valuing herself as a woman. This too, is evident in her contributions such as Brighter Days for African Beauty in Nicole Moore’s anthologies Brown Eyes and Hair Power-Skin Revolution focusing on identity and race.
Amanda’s Fly Girl, is a witty, adventurous and candid account of her experiences as an air stewardess. From rising above racism, to breaking the mould, to witnessing the stark contrasts of wealth, poverty, racism and acceptance, she takes us on an unforgettable journey.
For a SIGNED copy contact Amanda at: firstname.lastname@example.org
How does your work with Ms Rose Blossom impact young women?
Ms Rose Blossom’s work is duo-dimensional. The work impacts the lives of young women from being influential in building self-esteem to talking about sexual health taboo topics; all via creative communications in creative writing and workshops and speaking at events.
What inspired you to set up Ms Rose Blossom?
A number of life experiences have contributed to the innovation of Ms Rose Blossom. Firstly, my service in schools and colleges when I was employed to mentor and teach students with Special Needs as well as ‘mainstream’ pupils, then my work in programme development for economic empowerment of marginalised women. I realised that there are a group of women that were marginalised and needed to be targeted and coached and given extra support in areas such as self-esteem, self-image and sexual health
FGM practices are still going on and many young girls are being taken abroad to have this procedure done. Can you explain what FGM is and what is being done to educate these girls and their families about their rights/this harmful practise?
FGM stands for Female Genital Mutilation involving the cutting of the clitoris and other genital parts. This is practised on both babies and young women for non medical purposes and mainly to chastise women. There are a number of charities and individuals working as activists, educators and psychotherapists who work with affected communities and also inform the general public for safeguarding purposes, such organisations include 28 Too Many, Integrate Bristol, Daughters of Eve, and key speakers like Alimatu Dimonekene and Hilary Burrage who have fought for years to safeguard girls in education authorities. Ms Rose Blossom contributes to FGM awareness by talking to individuals from affected communities, being a point of call and signposting through the blog and also speaking at community events.
Having been a contributor in Mr Wrong what would you advise women who constantly attracted and accepted men who were emotionally unavailable?
Women need to step back and take a look at their relationship as if an outsider is viewing them. When we keep repeating the same mistake obviously we are not learning and then we start blaming. If I were to advise, I can draw from my own experiences and study my self-worth to see where I am guilty in failed relationships.
What inspired you to write and contribute the story Guilty on 3 Counts?
It was the first time I had written and shared anything on the nature of love and relationships. I was inspired to write on this topic because it would also be a learning curve for me. As a memoirist I have learnt a lot from reflective writing, and it was quite essential to share as other woman may relate and learn from my story too.
Did you learn anything about yourself during the Mr Wrong process?
It was when I wrote that story that I understood a lot of my psychological traits and looked at my patterns. I gained further insight when the book was published and I was in the category of emotionally unavailable and looking deeper, I found that quite accurate and a hard hitting wake up call.
You have recently published your own book called Fly Girl which is very exciting; can you tell us what inspired you to write the book?
The love of writing and creativity was the initial inspiration to join the travel industry. Whilst the inspiration for the book came from a number of factors, I became confident in sharing my writing as a contributor to Nicole Moore’s Shangwe anthologies, Brown Eyes and Hair Power- Skin Revolution. Later, I was inspired by other writer’s progress including Daniella’s Mr Wrong book, and as a reader and writer of true stories I knew that it was time to write mine.
What was your biggest challenge as an air stewardess?
I learnt a lot from my writing my book. At the time my biggest challenge would have been being different, but now I am clear that being different is a grand thing; standing out or not fitting in is unique. So my biggest challenge was my mindset. With a positive mind all challenges are minimised.
What was your most memorable event?
After writing the book, I am now grateful for many magic moments in my memory; to be safe after the fear of being lost in LA, and fun in the USA, but most memorable was being part of a national rescue squad. In 1998 I was part of a cabin crew rescue squad rescuing civilians who were affected by the riots in Jakarta. For more info buy A Fly Girl!
What’s next for Amanda Epe?
I am pleased to be invited by UN Women to start the New Year speaking at an Inspirational Women event at The House of Parliament. In 2015, I share my story with 29 awesome co-authors in a forthcoming book called Born for This where we share our journeys of failure to success in the areas of life, love and business. I will also be playing a key part in The Mr Wrong Book Tour where I will be sharing my story, performing my poems and speaking about personal love and relationships in libraries and Waterstones across London from 12-14th February. I encourage readers to go after their dreams in this self help writing. I intend to continue with inspirational stories for women and the growth of Blossom Books.
How can we keep up to date with you?